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Ophioglossum:                                                                MAPBACKPICTURES

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Ophioglossum vulgatum L.                                                                                          Adder's-tongue

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Light 8. Wetness 7. pH 6-9. Fertility 3.                                                                                                                                      Native

Native. An inconspicuous plantain-like, 'unfern-like' lowland fern, with an obligate requirement for an association with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi at the buried non-photosynthetic worm-like prothallial stage, that also associate with the sporophyte stage, and may enable it to tap into grass metabolites [apparently not yet investigated]. Found on a range of calcareous, mildly acid to base rich soils, over sands, clays, limestone and chalk in a range of damp open habitats, in dune-slacks, marl pits, chalk pits, damp pastures, water meadows and marshes, damp woodland rides and clearings, on coastal cliff-tops, under bracken on heathland and on peat in regularly mown fen. It also occurs in damp garden lawns, as long as these are not too closely cropped in the spring. Although widely distributed across the non-acidic lowlands, its distribution is thin, seldom occurring in more than a handful of sites in a hectad, and in central and eastern England there has been a drastic decline due to the loss of old damp pastures and meadows, that it formerly frequented in such abundance, as to be said to be injurious to the grass (Page 2007), presumably as a result of a parasitic link via its mycorrhizal fungi. It has to be looked for in the early spring, the vertical leaf-like fronds appearing in Essex from mid-April and lasting until the late autumn, but in most sites by mid-May it is overtopped by grass. It can be overlooked in error for young leaves of Rumex acetosa, but these are hastate, and thin, bright green and have a central vein; whereas the single elliptical blade of Ophioglossum tapers at the base, is yellowish-green, somewhat thick and inflexible and has a unique anastomosing network of veins, quite unlike an angiosperm leaf. In Essex it occurs in damp meadows, marshes, chalk pits, damp open woodland, and in the cliff-top grasslands of the Tendring peninsular.

Post 1930 records.

TQ(51)38

350,877

18

Walthamstow Marshes. 1979. Brian Wurzell.

 

349,878

18

Walthamstow Marshes, single plant in recently cleared area. 19 April 2009. Jeremy Ison.

TQ(51)39

39,94+

18

By Ching Brook. [Flora of Essex 1974].

  392,971 18

Fernhills. 26 April 1998. Andrew Middleton.

TL(52)30

397,093

19

The Grove. Roydon. 11 May 1968. Martin Rickard. &  [Flora of Essex 1974].

TQ(51)48 42,87 18 City of London Cemetery, 1991. Paul Ferris.

TQ(51)49

424,930

18

Chigwell, Luxborough Lane, Hawthorn scrub, waste ground just south of Tube line embankment. 16 plants. 30 April 1967. K J Adams.

 

407,949

18

Epping Forest, several hundred plants on bare ground under Hawthorn on east side of track north of Warren Wood Pub. 1 May 1988. Mark Hanson.

 

416,946

18

Buckhurst Hill, Linderís field. 15 spathes, scrubby area in NE corner. 9 May 1984. K J Adams.

 

425,975

18

Epping Forest, grassy slope down to Baldwins pond, among Hawthorn thicket. 1951 to 1958. Ronald M Payne. Subsequently bulldozed out by Conservators. Mrs Small.

  4113,9582 & 4112,9587 to 4109,9594 18 Epping Forest, several quite large patches along the Gas Ride, 10 May 2012. Andy Froud.

 

41,96

18

Epping Forest, nr. Strawberry Hill ponds. [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

411,971

18

Epping Forest, grassy corner opposite Robin Hood Pub. Plentiful. 1958. Ronald M Payne; 70 plants May 1980; being enveloped by Hawthorn, only one spathe. 1986; no sign after 1988 when Hawthorns cleared back;  K J Adams.Record from Epping Forest Centenary Trust 12 May 1999. (City Data List). Area covered by Bramble May 2011. K J Adams.

 

40,96-7

18

Epping Forest, Old Church Plain. [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

40,97

18

Epping Forest, High Beach. [Flora of Essex 1974].

TL(52)40

42-3,05

19

Epping Long Green. [Flora of Essex 1974]; 1980. Patricia Moxey.

  4054,0620 19 Nazeing C.P., golf course. Several sq meters under Grey Willow by pond. 12 May 2015. Epping Wild Flower Group.

TL(52)41

44,11

19

Harlow, 50-100 behind Burnt Mill station. August 1998. Charles & Shirley Watson.

 

41,10

19

Hundsdon Mead, abundant, May 1980. John L Fielding and K J Adams.

TL(52)42

47,28

19

Manuden, Battles Wood. 24 April 1989. Shirley Watson.

TQ(51)57

57,78

18

Old Quarries, Stifford. [Flora of Essex 1974].

TQ(51)59

50,93

18

Havering atte Bower, scrubland. Date ? K J Adams.

 

529,928 & 532,931

18

Romford Common, abundant in 2 meadows. 13 May 1980. Brian Coombes.

 

55,93?

18

Dagnam Park. 1980. K J Adams.

TL(52)51

51,12 19 Shirley Watson. date? where?
 

56,19

19

Canfield Hart. . [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

54,16+

19

Hatfield Broad Oak. . [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

58,17

19

Great Canfield, Marsh Farm.  [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

59,13

 

Leaden Roding, Chalks Green. [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

54,19

19

Hatfield Forest, by the Shell House.[Flora of Essex 1974].

TL(52)52 52,26? 19 Aubrey Buxton N.R. , 'good colony', 1985; plentiful 1991; John L. Fielding;
  59,26 19 Tilty, c.1,000+ between Eseley and Horne Woods. Shirley Watson & John Fielding. April 2000.
  53,24 19 Stansted, Turner's Spring.  ???? John L Fielding.
  542,209 19 Hatfield Forest, Spittlemore Coppice in ride (Forest Manager) date ???

TL(52)53

502,398 19 Littlebury, north verge of Strethall Road, 4 plants. 17 May 2010. Violet Ashford.

 

51,37+

19

Wendens Ambo. [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

548,345

19

Debden, Howe Wood. 4 June 1969. Martin Rickard; & [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

536,306

19

Priors Wood. [Flora of Essex 1974].

  541,305 19 Priors Wood. 6 plants side of ride, 17 May 1970. Martin Rickard.
 

527,346

19

Newport, Water Lane Plantation. [Flora of Essex 1974].

TL(52)54

53,41

19

Emanuel Wood. [Flora of Essex 1974].

TQ(51)67

60,78

18

Grays Chalk Quarry. [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

608,790

18

Grays Chalk Quarry. Cleared area near southern margin of lake. 8 April 1982. K.J.Adams.

 

608,790

18

Grays Chalk Quarry, damp woodland on quarry floor. 1984. Steven Prewer; and 12 plants. 1989. Simon Pepper

 

61120,78714

18

Grays Chalk Quarry, upper ledge 11 June 2005. Patrick & Ruth Cavanah.

 

611,786

18

Grays Chalk Quarry, upper ledge, many thousands of plants over very large area, scrubby grassland. 28 May 2008. K J Adams.

TQ(51)68

672,851 18  Horndon Meadow EWT N.R.. LoW site review. and 2005 Rodney L Cole.& 2014 Giles Groome.
  67,87 18 Langdon Hill Recreation Ground. LoW sites review.
 

685,875

18

Langdon Hills, Marks Hill Wood, frequent in grassy clearing. 20 June 1993. Tim Pyner.

  6880,8689 18 Basildon D.C., Little Kingston Meadow, Willow Park, part of Langdon EWT N.R. 1995-2010. Rodney L Cole.

 

697,863

18

Basildon D.C., Martinhole Meadow SSSI, One Tree Hill, several plants in old meadow. 25 May 1985. Tim Pyner.

  687,874 18 By Corona Road Pond, 1974. Now built over. Rodney  L Cole.
  6880,8689 18 Basildon D.C. Langdon Hills, Little Kingston Meadow, Willow Park small colony under bracken at eastern end. 2010. Peter Furze.
  6889,8695 18 Basildon D.C. Langdon Hills, Willow Park meadow north-east - in damp area with D. praetermissa & D. fuchsii. 2010. Peter Furze.
  686,876 18 Marks Hill Reserve, Dornier Clearing, 1977 - 2011.. Rodney L Cole.
  686,874 18 Marks Hill Reserve, marshy meadow off Staneway. 1979. Rodney L Cole.
       
  694,874 18 Chapel Field,  old grassland near Sporehams.1991. Rodney L Cole.
  697,863 18 Martinhole Meadow, 1974. Rodney L Cole.
  697,863 18 Martinhole Meaow, small patch, 12 May 2009. K J Adams et EFC.

 

69,86

18

Bells Hill Meadow. 1 May 2002. Mary Smith.

TQ(51)69

61,95+

18

Shenfield, old grassland in garden.[Flora of Essex 1974]

  6638,9426 18 Billericay C.P., more than a dozen in meadow next to the football ground. 23 April 2013. Martin McCleary..
  68,94/5 18 Norsey Meadow, old record LoW sites review.
TQ(51)78 70,86 18 Bells Hill Meadow. LoW sites review.
  707,868 18 Bells Hill Meadow, meadow off Bellís Hill Road.1982 - 2007. Rodney L Cole.
  707,869 18 Bells Hill Meadow, 26 April 2012. Rodney L.Cole
  701,863 18 Basildon D.C., Johnson's West Meadow, One Tree Hill Country Park 1993 - 2011. Rodney L Cole.
  706,876 18 Basildon Meadows SSSI, Hawkesbury Bush, 1974. Rodney L Cole.

TQ(51)79

731,911

18

Nevenden, disturbed pasture south of Noke Wood, large colony. 8 May 1988. Tim Pyner.

 

78,91

18

Rawreth, pasture nr. The Chase. [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

78,91

18

Rayleigh. 1972. [Flora of Essex 1974].

TL(52)70

78,03

18

Little Baddow, meadow nr. Overshots Bridge. [Flora of Essex 1974].

TL(52)71

715,108

19

Newland Grove, 18 May 1991. Jeremy Ison; 3x1m patch with 250+ spathes, 2005; still present 2010. Martin Heyward.

TL(52)72

74,29+

19

Beazley End. [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

71,32

19

Poor Park, nr. Wethersfield. [Flora of Essex 1974].

TL(52)73

779,356

19

Castle Hedingham, The Marshes. [Flora of Essex 1974].

  715,339 19 Wethersfield Airbase, fuel tank compond, c. 30 plants mostly with sporangia. 7 May 2014. K. J. Adams.

TQ(51)88

823,888

18

Daws Heath, pastures on east side of pound wood, frequent 26 May 1985; scarce 17 June 1996. Tim Pyner.

TQ(51)89

84,93

18

Hockley, Pulpits Farm. [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

83,94

18

Hockley, meadow. 1973. [Flora of Essex 1974].

TL(52)82

81-2,25

19

Great Monks Wood. [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

825,275

19

Greenstead Green, pasture. 20 June 1971. Martin Rickard. & [Flora of Essex 1974].

TL(52)91

91,18

19

1987. Peter Wilson.

 

926,156

19

Tolleshunt Knights, Long Wood. 27 May 1992. Ursula Broughton & B E Wright.

 

916-7,149 & 915-6,150

19

Oxley Meadow N.R. , abundant in places in small field  . May 1992-94. CNHS; 2002. Terri Tarpey.

 

96,20

19

1978. CNHS.

 

96,21

19

1980. CNHS.

TM(62)01

04,14+  ?

19

Mersea.[Flora of Essex 1974].

 

05,19

19

Fingringhoe Wick N.R. c. 40 spikes in cleared area by path to Kitts Pond, June 1979; 1989. Laurie Forsyth.

TM(62)03

05,31

19

Dedham Heath.[Flora of Essex 1974].

TM(62)11

16,18

19

Little Clacton, 1000+ plants (c.fr) in meadow following application of weed killer.5 June 1998. David R Bain.

TM(62)12

176,267

19

Brooklands, Stoneís Green. C.30 plants in a patch in pony field. 2 May 1992. Terri Tarpey.

 

18,22

19

1984. David R Bain.

 

007,208

19

MOD Berechurch, 2003 & 2004. locally plentiful in SE corner of field 02. Terri Tarpey & Jeremy J Heath.

 

008,268

19

High Woods Country Park, 100+ plants in 2ft diam. Patch.1993. Dick Mash.

TM(62)13

159,316 19

Wrabness C.P., Wrabness N.R. Eleven metre stretch in ungrazed grassland, adjacent to surface path through the reserve, in quantity. Not seen previously. 20 April 2019. Sue Hooton.

 

19,31

19

Copperas fields, in grassland reclaimed by mowing. 1991, 1996,1997: Russell Leavett.

 

195,317

19

Scrub by Stour estuary to NE of Stour Wood, plentiful in managed grassland 1994. Russell Leavett.

TM(62)22

24,20

19

1984. David R Bain.

 

26,23-4

19

Walton on the Naze, frequent in scrub and grassland. 19 May 1985. Tim Pyner.

 

21,24

19

Skippers Island. [Flora of Essex 1974].

 

258,222

19

Barnes Spinney N.R., abundant at west end of old allotment area. 2 May 1994. Terri Tarpey.

 

26,23

19

1985. Alan Wake.

 

26,24

19

1984. David R Bain.